Traders, transporters at the commercial nerve centre and capital of Anambra state, Onitsha and Awka respectively have continue to reject old denominations of 500 naira and 1000 naira notes despite Central Bank of Nigeria Order.
The acting Director, CBN Corporate Communications, Isa Abdulmumin during the Bankers’ Committee meeting held on Sunday said the CBN gave the directive that the “Old N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes Remain Legal Tender”, News Echo reports.
“Accordingly, the CBN met with the Bankers’ Committee and has directed that the old N200, N500 and N1000 banknotes remain legal tender alongside the redesigned banknotes till December 31, 2023.
Consequently, all concerned are directed to conform accordingly.” The court had said the Federal Government’s naira redesign policy contravened the 1999 Constitution.
Abdulmumin said the directive was in compliance with Buhari’s administration obedience to court orders, yet this might not be the case of these small scale business owners who are bent at obeying the first CBN directives not to accept these notes anymore. Our correspondent who took to the streets to ascertain the level of compliance of the new order reports that despite Emefiele’s statement to accept these old notes, most of these traders, transporters, artisans did heed to the instruction.
A shuttle driver operating at the Amawbia axis who gave his name as Emeka said when we were told to stop the use of old Bill’s, there were posters on bill boardsHe stressed that this might be a ploy for Igbo traders for it to jeopardise the business activities of the southeast.
“So we don’t want to fall a victim of these plans until after the election and we are fully convinced that the old naira notes is been universally accepted in most states before some of us begin to collect it”, he added.
Another petty business woman who deals on articles, mama Ifeoma noted that her fears still remains that she might not be able to use the money when she visits eke awka market to buy food for her children. She further added that her acceptance of the old notes would depend on the general acceptability of traders at the market.
For Mazi Ugochukwu who owns a beer parlour at Okpuno Awka, lamented the sufferings he went through few weeks before election.
” Most of my customers came and bought drinks and pepper soup which they paid with old notes. At first when the rumour was on, I never took cognisance of it, though i expected the places we buy drinks in cartons to accept it but they refused. I had to pay deduct money from the actual amount I had before one of the POS guys could correct it”, he decried
Meanwhile, when our correspondent visited the Upper Iweka at Onitsha, he gathered that some motor parks like Peace motors, Star Sunny, Izuchukwu transport as well buses going to Asaba, delta state rejected the old naira notes.
Even, shuttle drivers ruining around both cities of Awka and Onitsha, finds it difficult to accept the old 500 and 1000 naira notes, News Echo reports.
Meanwhile, Anambra state Governor, Prof Charles Soludo on monday warned banks in the state to comply by accepting the old 500 and 1000 naira notes or risk being shut down.
The governor also called on the resident of the state to report any bank that has failed to comply with the order.
“Tellers at the commercial banks are to generate the codes for deposits and there is no limit to the number of times an individual or company can make deposits”.
“Residents of Anambra are therefore advised to freely accept and transact their businesses with the old currency notes (N200; N500; and N1, 000) as well as the new notes.
Residents should report any bank that refuses to accept deposits of the old notes. Anambra State Government will not only report such a bank to the CBN, but will also immediately shut down the defaulting branch”.
Elder state man, Chief Sotre Eze in a telephone conversation with our correspondent said the statement issued by the Governor was a great effort geared towards improving the economic situation of the state.
Chief Eze reiterated that there’s need to sensitize the citizens especially, traders and service providers. Information from Deposit Money Banks indicate that traders refuse to accept the old Naira notes from buyers, ditto for transporters/commercial vehicles and sundry service providers.
While the governorship and state house of Assembly election draws near, it is expected that the most people will start accepting it soon after the exercise.
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